The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian

The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian

The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian

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STOP! In the name of safety
STOP! In the name of safety
Izabella Paracuelles, Feature Editor • March 15, 2024
Launched in 2017, the Evanston Mural Arts Program collaborates with talented local artists to create visual art around the city. They have produced close to 30 murals throughout Evanston.
'Transforming spaces'
Audrey Bodine, Staff Writer • March 15, 2024
Competition, camaraderie...with food on the side
Competition, camaraderie...with food on the side
Stella Davis, Staff Writer • March 15, 2024
Books & Breakfast: a playful, positive approach to equity
Books & Breakfast: a playful, positive approach to equity
Jeremy Schoen, Staff Writer • March 15, 2024

Opinion | Climate conversations with Milo

In January of 2023, a group of dedicated students, administrators, teachers and community members launched the ETHS Sustainability Policy Committee. The committee was created with the intention of developing and passing a sustainability policy at ETHS, holding the school accountable to sustainability goals that extend decades into the future.

For the past year, our committee engaged with experts on everything from waste management to “green” purchasing. We drafted a policy that details eight critical goal areas for our school to demonstrate improvement in. We decided to brand our policy as the Green New Deal (GND) for ETHS, seeking to destigmatize the controversial and misportrayed concept of a GND and to become the third school district in the country to pass a GND.

Today, I write as a senior at ETHS, a leader on that committee and the Hub Coordinator of E-Town Sunrise, the youth-led organization that has championed climate justice at ETHS since its 2019 inception. As we approach the Feb 26 vote on the GND for ETHS, I want to share my public comment from the Feb 12 school board meeting, which was the first time that this monumental policy appeared before the entire board. I hope that this statement serves as a reminder of what we—as youth, as Evanstonians, as humans—are fighting for, and what we can win when we dedicate ourselves to this movement.

When hundreds of thousands of people around the world rallied for global climate action in 2015, they marched and spoke and listened. In the ensuing days, 195 countries signed the Paris Climate Accords, the most significant unified global climate commitment to this day. 

When tens of thousands of people gathered in Manhattan last September to demand an end to fossil fuels, they marched and spoke and listened. Days later, the Biden Administration launched the American Climate Corps, uniting over 20,000 people nationwide in addressing the climate crisis and creating a green future.

When dozens and dozens of ETHS students walked out of the school two years ago demanding an ETHS sustainability coordinator, we marched and spoke and listened. Weeks later, Mr. Crawford was hired, and he has served as an invaluable bridge between ETHS administrators and student activists. 

In every one of these instances, we have marched and spoken and listened because we are angry. We are angry that temperatures have reached record heights. We are angry that disadvantaged communities can’t trust the water they drink or the air they breathe. We are angry that millions of people around the world are losing their homes and their lives as unprecedented storms wreck their livelihoods and wildfires torch their future. 

So, when the people who run our school promise us 100 percent emissions reduction by 2050, options for locally sourced foods, and zero waste by 2045 alongside several other goal areas, we say, “Thank you.” Thank you for recognizing that we have a right to climate education. Thank you for showing that if the world changes, so can we. Thank you for looking out for us. 

As the third school district in the country to pass a Green New Deal for Schools, we can become an example for the country. We can send a message that the schools around us can and must do the same. We can guarantee that when my children and grandchildren bike down Dodge and walk through Entrance 1, they enter a school that exemplifies the sustainable world that they will one day lead.

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Milo Slevin, Feature Editor
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